By Dana Baasiri
With digital audio content on the rise, podcast marketing is the #1 fastest growing form of entertainment with 68% of U.S. consumers streaming music, news and podcasts every month. Whether or not you’re an avid podcast listener yourself, you’ve probably noticed the slew of podcasts that have emerged over the last few years, giving ample opportunity for marketers to expand their digital footprint. In fact, in 2022, 82% of marketers had planned to continue investing the same amount or an increased amount in podcast and audio content. But, are podcasts truly the right medium for you to increase brand awareness and reach audiences? If you are thinking of including streamed audio content in your strategy, here are the latest facts.
The Latest In Podcast Marketing
With any growing platform, the landscape is constantly changing and pivoting. Here is what the podcast industry looks like today:
- 72% of Americans aged 35 – 54 stream audio every month
- 50% of listeners are 12-34 yrs old and 34% are 35-54 yrs old
- Over 45% of podcast listeners have a HHI of $250k, offering a direct connection to affluent audiences
- Over half of listeners are receptive to purchase a product, allowing brands the opportunity to convert listens into sales
- There has been a 26.5% increase in podcast shows between 2020 and 2021, 44% of which are actually being monetized.
- Monthly podcast listeners grew by 6.1% in 2022 alone — bringing the total to 125 million listeners
The Power of Podcasts
While podcasts may not be the first platform that come to mind when considering influencer marketing, they are undeniably impactful in their own way. Let’s take a look at the strengths and differentiators that podcast marketing can offer your travel brand:
- The length of podcast content consumption is far greater than other forms of content, with the average length being at least 30 minutes
- Podcasts are versatile and can be consumed “on the go” more so than visual content — listeners can pop in their earphones and be engaged while driving, running, shopping and much more
- Audio content often deploys a conversational tone which lends itself to authentically connect with listeners in a way that some other branded content may not
- The podcast host becomes a trusted voice that can be amplified to the masses
- Storytelling feels more organic as podcast content is often centered around a story that digs deeper than short-form or bite size content — more time to get your message across can help “soften” the sales pitch
How To Leverage “Podcasts in Paradise”
Where does travel fit into the podcast landscape? Like any other platform or marketing channel, crafting unique strategies that set your brand up for success is key. “Podcasts in Paradise” is our way of identifying seamless integration opportunities for travel brands to collaborate with podcasts, some of these include:
- Focusing on aspirational and immersive content by inviting podcast hosts to experience your product first-hand and possibly broadcast on location
- Heightening brand engagement and excitement by offering travel prizing to surprise and delight the listeners
- Creating enticing promotional offers and exclusive deals for listeners to drive revenue and increase sales in a quantifiable way
- Maximize varying formats to find a true fit for your campaign objectives, including:
- Interview Integration: Give your brand a voice by having a dedicated spokesperson speak to your product – whether that’s a team member or a brand ambassador, they reveal off-the-menu items or insider tips that no one else knows.
- Celebrity Endorsements: Partner with a celebrity-hosted podcast show to leverage likeness, fanbase and amplify the message on their media channels.
- Targeted Topics: Promote a unique product or amenity, or target a specific audience segment by pairing up with a lifestyle podcast show with focuses such as culinary, wellness, relationships, fitness, and adventure.
How To Measure Podcast Marketing Success
Identifying whether or not podcast marketing is right for you requires a consideration of its KPIs and measures of success. This will also help structure a podcast marketing campaign in a way that truly allows you to gain insight into its performance. So, how measurable is podcast marketing?
- Size of Audience / # of Listeners: This is an obvious one but the number of listeners that podcast reaches is one of the first metrics that can help gauge the potential success of a campaign.
- Quality content to share brand stories: While numbers are important, the quality of the content is just as critical. This can be measured by the sentiment and tone of which the host is talking about your brand, the depth of the narrative, number of brand name mentions, and how engaging and entertaining it is among other things.
- Increase in digital and social brand awareness and interactions: A truly impactful podcast marketing strategy will help drive traffic to your owned channels, be it the website or social media channels that you may be directing listeners to.
- Strategically placed direct marketing weblinks: Utilize trackable URLs on the podcast’s channels.
- # of Episode Downloads: How many times was that particular episode downloaded and listened to?
With on-demand audio continuing to grow, the future of podcast marketing looks bright as experts forecast that listeners in the U.S. could increase from 75.9 million to 100 million listeners in the U.S. by 2024. As with all developing platforms and emerging channels, podcast campaigns are expected to be crafted with more precision, sharper measuring tools and thoughtful consideration.
Unsure if podcasts are the right marketing tool for your campaign or strategy? Consider other social media platforms or forms of influence that can achieve results you’re looking for such as YouTube collaborations or even radio remotes and sweepstakes.
Alliance Connection works with Caribbean and Mexico travel brands to drive awareness and bookings through strategic marketing partnerships and powerful brand interactions across a highly selective portfolio of brands, media, social influencers and entertainment partners that connect, capture and influence travelers across the U.S.
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